With one in four people in the UK experiencing a mental health problem at any given time, this World Mental Health Day we are encouraging employers to think about how they can look after the mental health and wellbeing of their employees.
Mental health issues have been shown to increase employee absenteeism, deliver lower rates of productivity and have increased costs to the business. However, this report from the World Mental Health Foundation also shows that the value added by people with mental health problems in the workforce is greater than the costs arising.
This World Mental Health Day, on Tuesday 10 October, ²gether NHS Foundation Trust is working with partners in Gloucestershire and Herefordshire to highlight the importance of mental health to employers.
We are encouraging organisations to take a look at their wellbeing strategy and make sure employees know about the support that is available for them.
The Trust is part of the Gloucestershire Tackles Stigma group, a multi-agency partnership working to reduce the stigma around mental health issues in the county. Representatives of the partnership will be visiting three Gloucestershire employers to speak to them about mental health and how to get help and support.
- Tesco – St Oswald’s Road, Gloucester
- Superdry – The Runnings, Cheltenham
- Aspire – GL1, Bruton Way, Gloucester
Professor Jane Melton, Director of Engagement and Integration, ²gether NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We hope that World Mental Health Day will act a reminder to people, and employers, that mental health and emotional wellbeing is important, not just on 10 October, but every day.
“We spend a large proportion of our day at work, so we want to work with employers to help raise awareness of how we can all encourage good mental health in the workplace and support our employees, and each other.
“We also want people to be aware of the stigma that surrounds mental illness and what they can do to help reduce that. Anyone of us could suffer from a mental health problem, so it’s vital that we keep talking about how we are feeling and how we are, and make sure that we listen when other people tell us how they are.
“If you do just one thing today, then ask someone how they are and really listen to their answer; it can make a big difference.”
The Trust will also be supporting the following events on and around World Mental Health Day:
- Polish Healthfest, Kingsway Community Centre, Thatcham Avenue, Quedgeley – Saturday 7 October, 1-4pm
- Tea and Talk, Stonebow Unit, Hereford – Tuesday 10 October. The Occupational Therapy will be putting on a display of patients art, written work and reflections on living with mental illness.
- Heads Up Cheltenham finale of year of action – Tuesday 10 October, 5.30-7pm, Municipal Offices, Cheltenham.
- Tea and Talk session for Gloucestershire County Council employees – Wednesday 11 October, Shire Hall.
If you need support with mental health issues, then visit your GP, or contact Let’s Talk, a free NHS service that you can self-refer to. You can call them on 0800 073 2200 or visit www.talkghc.nhs.uk.